The One Key for Being a Good Teacher

27 Dec

The key is teacher’s desire to empower her/his students to learn autonomously. Ultimately this makes the teacher become unnecessary. Of course, first you must convince your students that you are not a threat to them, but an ally.

Empowerment makes students want to learn. You can call it reverse psychology, or just avoiding the reactions of students when they are told to do things they might prefer not doing. Ultimately it is about teaching accountability, and doing things because they need to be done, not because someone tells me to.

The way empowerment is visible in the classrooms lies in the cooperative way of learning and teaching. We have a common goal. We work together towards reaching it. (This is so simple that I almost feel silly typing it down! – Yet, it still is too seldom practiced in our classrooms! Too many teachers engage in unnecessary power struggles every day.)

There is also a cognitive aspect in empowerment: unleashing your students intellectual curiosity. Helping and guiding students in their learning process is a non-threatening way to assess their learning, too. We all have different approaches to learning, and evaluating the process rather than the product gives much more information about how your students are advancing.

The constructive part of empowerment is helping your students make well informed choices every day. Small and big choices, but both equally justified – because it helps us understand why we do certain things. The important thing is to reflect back to previous experiences and build on the understanding we gained there. After all, we all helping our students to construct their own view of the world we live in.

Your life – your world – your choices.

I wish all students were empowered to know that!

3 Responses to “The One Key for Being a Good Teacher”

  1. I mean arriving to work 30-60 minutes early to prepare, and in addition,
    planning with your grade level team, instead of planning by yourself,
    during your one hour of prep time per week. They need to offer you online game selections from the
    diverse platforms accessible these kinds of as Personal computer, Mac, Playstation,
    Nintendo and Microsoft for example. Everywhere I read all
    the advice I see is about treating children with
    respect, about being a ‘nice’ teacher.

    • Nina May 18, 2014 at 12:27 pm #

      Thanks for your comment! respect is a funny thing: by respecting others you gain more respect to yourself.

      I don’t quite understand the connection to game consoles, though.

      In reality teaching is not about being “nice” or not being nice. Teaching is a profession to help students learn more/ learn better than they would learn on their own.

      Ultimately this boils down to the question of deep vs. surface learning: do you want your students to understand the content and transfer it to the other areas of their learning and life, or do you want them to just memorize it to pass the next test?



  1. Great teachers | NotesFromNina - August 25, 2013

    […] teachers know the key to showing students they are consistent and fair is communication: The more students understand why […]

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